Taking Us For A Ride? Two – Controversial past of £2k-a-day axeman

Spotted by ‘a regular reader’, with Rothpol’s thanks. From Burton Mail:

Burton Mail.

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Controversial past of £2k-a-day axeman

Written by JOSH TAYLOR

A £1,975-A-DAY executive at Burton’s Queen’s Hospital is among a group of senior healthcare officials found to have breached f inancial rules governing private sector contracts

Tim Bolot , who now works as ‘turnaround di rector’ for Burton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, was cleared of dishonesty and f raud following an investigation into contracts awarded by South London Healthcare NHS Trust, where Mr Bolot worked as finance director.

But Mr Bolot and other members of the London-based trust’s board of directors were criticised in a report by the London Audit Consortium, which said rules had been broken during the awarding of three contracts to two private companies because a strict tender process had not been observed.

Mr Bolot became the London trust’s finance director in April 2010 on a £3,000-a-day contract to advise on £52 million of spending cuts.

But the trust was placed under the control of Whitehall administrators earlier this year after failing to service its £245million debts.

The Mail revealed last month that Mr Bolot had since been appointed by the trust running Burton’s Queen’s Hospital on nearly £2,000 a day to help deliver a £19million spending cuts package which could include up to 150 redundancies.

Asked to comment on the London Audit Consortium’s findings by the Mail, Mr Bolot’s company, Bolt Partners, said the accusations against Mr Bolot and other directors had been made by doctors working for South London Healthcare NHS Trust who lost out financially when new contracts were drawn up.

In a statement to the Mail, Bolt Partners said: “South London Healthcare NHS Trust conducted a competitive process in 2010 in order to identify a more costeffective solution to meeting its 18-week targets for treatment in the orthopaedic department. For many years, the trust’s own orthopaedic consultants had been performing additional work for the trust at premium overtime rates at great cost to the trust and the taxpayer with no competitive process.

“Trust surgeons were essentially being rewarded for not meeting their targets in the public sector and then performing the work at premium rates either as over t ime or though thei r private companies.

“A competitive process awarded this work to Rapid Surgical Solutions. This process was initiated by the board in 2010, before Tim Bolot joined the trust as interimfinance director in April 2010.

“The decision to award the work to Rapid Surgical Solutions was made and approved by the board.

“This was a contract awarded to minimise the cost of reduced waiting times for patients during a period of considerable pressure and a period during which the trust was facing considerable financial difficulties.”

Of the consortium’s report , the statement said: “The report is clear in its finding that no evidence of fraud or dishonesty was found to have been committed.” The company also claimed the consortium’s findings related to the London trust’s board and not Mr Bolot individually.

See also: Taking Us For A Ride?

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